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Light Tackle Artificial Angling - Part 2  Rating:  Rating
 
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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:47 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Light Tackle Fishing – Artificial Baits – Part 2

By Neil Gouws

September 2008

-----------------------------

In part 1 I went through what to buy …

Wecome to part 2, setup time … 
  • Putting Braid on your reel
    • The knots used
  • Putting Leader line onto the reel
    • The knots used
  • Putting a Fluorocarbon snoot onto your Leader Line
  • Getting your Terminal Tackle Ready for the trip
  • Preparing your Artificial Soft Lures and storing them
  • Preparing your lures
    • Spoons
    • Other Spoons
    • Swimming Lures
    • Lipped Lures
    • Jigs
    • Plastic Surface Plugs
    • Wooden Surface Plugs
    • Surface Poppers
    • Unrigged Soft Plastics
    • Rigged Soft Plastics
    • Worms and the others

It’s now time to take your stuff out the boot / garage / shed or hole in the ground, where ever you hiding it from your wife ( I hope you didn’t go and buy it on the Credit Card )

Before we go any further, some weight info that you need to know

1 ounce (oz) = 28.35 grams

1 pound (lb) = 0.45 kg

Therefore

A half ounce spoon weighs 14 grams.

10 lb line has a breaking strain of 4.5kg.

This is a very handy program, called Convert. Download it to your computer

http://wscope.com/download/convert.exe


Let's start then ...

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:48 pm by neilg

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:48 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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To not get you in trouble (well more than you already are), ONLY take out the rod, reel and braid, leave the rest as is.

Here is a picture of the rod rating



It’s a 8ft rod, suggested line weight or 12-25lb (about 6-12kg) and a lure weight of ¼ to 1½ oz.

Putting the braid on the reel

Put the reel on the rod, and run the braid through the guides from the tip of the rod down to the reel

Now you need to tie the braid to your spool, it’s much easier to do it with the spool OFF the reel.

You can use the arbor knot (from http://www.sealine.co.za/view_forum.php?id=44)

I have never liked the knot, but it’s there for you to use, LOTS of people use it without problems.

What I do is as follows

I take the spool off the reel,

Wrap the line around the spool 3 to 4 times

And now simply tie either a UNI knot or a 3turn Fig 8 Knot (also known as Centauri Knot)

For Fig 8 see http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=4642&forum_id=44

For Uni see http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=1701&forum_id=44

The reason I do it this way is because the line bites onto itself and will therefore not slip if you ever get spooled   (that’s if the line doesn’t break), then at least if you fight back, the line won’t just slip when you try and get your line back with a fighting fish on the other side. Test it, you’ll see what I mean.

It’s important to note this

When you make a knot it should be lubricated before you set the knot, it prevents heat building up and damaging your line.

It’s also important that you use your fingers to guide the knot as close as possible to the area you intend locking it onto, put your fingers on the knot and push it towards your target (say a swivel or hook) while pulling the “main line” with the other hand. Once it’s reached it’s destination it’s now time to put pressure on the knot to “lock” it. Also leave a tag-end of 1-2mm, should your knot not be locked properly and the tag-end is too short the knot will pull loose.

It is now VERY important to wind the line as tight as you possibly can onto the spool, the easiest way to do it will be to ask your wife, or even better, some stranger walking past your house to help you, he’ll probably be more willing to help you.

Take a screwdriver and push through the middle of the spool, now a rag or something on BOTH sides of the spool (you can dip everything in a bucket of water to prevent friction and give better lube/line lay on the spool) and the person must put pressure on the spool by pressing the rags against the spool. Set the drag on your reel up (don’t lock it), but make it fairly tight and now you simply relax and wind the line onto your reel.

Very important

If the line is not wound on tight enough and you pick up your dream fish the braid can pull into the bottom layers of line, which will result in a very quick BREAK OFF.

Another more expensive way of getting line onto your reel (as tightly wound on as possible) is to follow the directions previously mentioned but putting it onto an empty “spare” reel, once done the drag on the spare reel can be set and you can now reel the line onto the reel you actually want it on. Takes longer but works.

DO NOT overfill the spool with line, leave ATLEAST 3mm of space between line and lip of spool.

If you put too much line on (filling to the max), you wont have space for leader line and you will also get wind-knots very quickly.



 



These are 2 of my own reels, see just how much space I leave between the line and the lip of the spool ? For good reason, I have less line on the reels yes, but I also have a lot less problems !

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:00 pm by neilg

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:49 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Putting Leader line onto the reel

Now that your reel is filled with a nice coloured braid it’s time to add some leader line.

Take out that NORMAL CLEAR MONOFILAMENT ( 7 or 10kg).

You now have to connect the mono line to the braid.

Let’s look at knot strength (as supplied by Reefman), so you know what knot to use to connect your main line (braid) to your leader line (mono)



 Based on this, the following knots will do :

Braid to Leader – YUCATAN knot - http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=1703&forum_id=44

Leader to Swivel - Fig 8              - http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=4642&forum_id=44

                            Uni               - http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=1701&forum_id=44

Fluorocarbon 1m-1.5m to swivel  - as above

All these knots are VERY easy knots to tie, some advice, first take some mono line, and cut 1m pieces, now make the knots by tying the two sides together, that way if you make a mistake while learning you just throw the mono away, it’s much cheaper.

Okay, so you know how to make the knots now (tx Reefman).

How long must your leader line (mono) be, easy, about 1m longer than your rod.

Why a meter longer, well because then the braid won’t cut your fingers when casting.

Don’t measure and cut mono off, make the knot between braid and leader, once that is done, now measure and cut off the mono (remember about a meter longer than your rod)

You have now successfully added a length of leader line to your reel.

The reel is now ready for storage until your next fishing trip
  • A tip on storing ANY REEL, don’t store it with the drag turned tight, turn the drag as loose as possible, if you do store a reel with a tight drag it can and will damage the drag washers by compressing them.
So let’s look further into why it’s done this way :
  • As said before, braid doesn’t have very good abrasion resistance
  • Braid is expensive, you want to minimize the chances of it getting damaged
  • Mono has VERY GOOD abrasion resistance
  • Mono is MUCH CHEAPER than braid
  • Your leader line is not coloured, it’s clear and less visible in the water
  • Leader line should be replaced on a regular basis, it takes all the knocks and bumps
You still wondering why I said buy 7 and 10kg Clear mono line ?

Well because of what I said above and because you can easily take the one off and change to the other (those 2 spools should always be in your tackle bag), let’s say for example the conditions are very rough or there are lots of rocks then it’s time to go for the 10kg, if not so rough or u fishing a sandy area like a river mouth or surf then go for the 7kg.

The line that takes the most punishment in fishing is probably that first part of line, it scratches against the fish and as the fish tries to get rid of the hook in it’s mouth and it also scratches against the rocks and every other obstacle.

Also (as said before) the mono is much softer on the fingers when casting, especially when you’re really trying to throw that lure 500m. When you are throwing plugs and spoons braid will very quickly start cutting your fingers.

Let’s say AS AN EXAMPLE you buy a 600m spool of mono and a 200m spool of Fluorocarbon and you use 5m of mono and 1m of fluorocarbon, well then you have enough mono leader for 120 fishing trips and enough fluorocarbon for 200 fishing trips. See I told you it will last you long, maybe not a lifetime but very long.

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:01 pm by neilg

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:50 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Fluorocarbon “snoot” or Invisible Bite Trace

This is a very expensive line and it’s generally wasted by fisherman who go and use it as both leader material and connection between swivel and hook. It’s really a waste of money, use normal clear mono for your leader line as discussed earlier.

Let’s look at why you are using a Fluorocarbon Snoot.

To cut a long story short, it’s said that Fish DON’T SEE IT in the water. Since I’m not a fish I can’t tell you if it’s true or not.

This (if true) means that they are not put off by that piece of line if front of your lure.

It is also a much harder and tougher line, and can take even more bumps and scratches.

But because it’s so hard, I don’t want it on my reel. (that’s one of the reasons for using normal mono line)

Okay, you have your leader attached to your main line and then to a VERY SMALL swivel or to nothing …

 This is again something that opinions differ on, you must choose for yourself on this.

Some people choose to not use a swivel because it’s visible in the water, others use it to fight line twist which is caused by the way coffee grinder type reels work. It’s your choice, I have always used a small power swivel and it’s worked fine, you can also choose to rather use a swivel between the snoot and the lure, it serves the same purpose and it’s entirely your choice.

If you are going the no swivel route check the Line to Line and Line to Leader knots above and use one of them to connect the leader to the snoot. 

If you go the first route, meaning Fig8 knot to swivel and then Snoot from there it’s also good.

Again your choice, both work.

Now you have your snoot or we can even call it Invisible Bite Trace tied to your leader.

Your rod with reel and line is now ready for action.

You can put it away for now

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:01 pm by neilg

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:52 pm $report_button
   
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Getting your Terminal Tackle Ready for the trip

From here on things might get a bit crazy, I might skip to one part and then come back again, I’ll try not to lose myself (and you)

You are now sitting with a lot of terminal tackle, meaning swivels, hooks, sinkers and everything else. YOU SHOULD NOT take everything with you when you go fishing.

I carry everything with me in the back of the car, call it my master container, and then have my smaller tackle boxes, when I get to the sea I simply take out what I need, put it in my light tackle container and then go fishing, that way, if I forget something it’s a short run back to the car to get what I forgot.

10 swivels, a few small sinkers, a few quick change clip on swivels, a few of each size hook (2 or 3 of each), 5 or so spare split rings and then a few of EACH SIZE / WEIGHT dropshot hooks you have.

Put the ones that you’ll be taking with you into your tackle box, the rest must be put away IN A SAFE PLACE.








Remember you are TRYING (I know it’s difficult) to pack as light as possible, while still having everything with you that you could possibly need. You can fit everything you need in these small storage boxes.

Be realistic with what you plan on taking with you. You will never need 50 hooks, so why take so many with you, it’s just more to carry around and more to clean when you get home.

If you didn’t buy yourself some ready made Quick change clip on swivels now would be a good time to make up 3 or so to also put in your little Terminal Tackle Box. The middle quick change clip pictured works very good, is made in South Africa and very strong. But they are all very good.



You get the double sided boxes as pictured, they are very compact, about 15 cm long and about 10cm wide, YOU CAN FIT A LOT in them and they take very little space. The one on the left cost be about R 100, and believe it or not, the one on the right cost me R20. Ofcourse the one on the left can take more and is better made, but the one on the right is definitely good enough.

Now take that Terminal tackle box and put it away, you finished with it.

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:02 pm by neilg

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:53 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Preparing your Artificial Soft Lures and Storing them



Like with your terminal tackle, it’s not a good idea to take the 100 different types of soft plastics that you bought with you every time you go fishing.

First problem with the little bags they come in … THEY LEAK … and man that Berkley sauce stinks.

The Berkley DVD that I watched said you should never ever put different soft baits together, they say the smell is different, the colours of the different lures can “rub off” on the other lures and a lot of other stuff, they also said that if you’ve used it (even if it’s not damaged) you should throw it away, JA RIGHT, if I got sponsored I would probably say the same. But since I’m not sponsored I do what I think best (and is the cheapest)

If what they say worries you I suggest you take a few different ones and put them together and leave them for a few days, see if what they say is true, according to me it’s not. I’ve been storing mine together for months, they all still stink and they haven’t lost the colour either.

Your choice, but I store them all together, one way I split them is Big ones in one SEALABLE tub, small ones in another and then the worms in another, the only reason I do that is because it’s easier to choose which I need.

I even put the cheaper unscented ones with the scented ones, that way my cheap ones suddenly become expensive (you are who you mix with). What I mean by that is that the unscented ones now also absorb that disgusting Berkley sauce and smell that supposedly drive the fish crazy.

Remember not to store them in direct sunlight, put them away in a cupboard somewhere, far away from the sun and your children and animals. The little monsters are also attracted to them and love to play with it.

When you go fishing you simply take out what you need and put them in the Berkley bucket and off you go.

One thing about these buckets, THEY TEND TO LEAK. (and it’s a smell you cannot get rid of), so be careful.

You can also use one of the small sealing tubs to take your soft lures with you on a fishing trip, it doesn’t have to be the bucket.



Okay, we’ve covered your storage of your soft lures

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:03 pm by neilg

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Preparing your lures

I say preparing your lures because that’s really what you have to do.

It’s simply a fact that MOST of the lures that you buy come with really crappy triangle (or single) hooks and split rings. They bend open and break very easy. Since you are a serious fisherman, THAT WILL NOT DO. You will make them better, almost BULLET PROOF.

Inspect ALL of them, if you have ANY doubt in the quality, remove them and put them in a safe place FAR away from children and animals. Don’t throw them away, you might need them when you are a little cash strapped and desperate. I simply don’t like throwing anything away. Throw it away today, need it tomorrow …

I cannot stress enough how important it is to make sure children and animals don’t have access to your fishing equipment, ESPECIALLY triangle hooks, make very sure they that are in a safe place where the only harm they can do is not staying sharp.

To check the hooks, take the hook and with small pliers try to bend it open, if you can see movement before you even put too much pressure on the hook it will not be good enough. Fish put pressure on hooks, and a hook that bends open will mean fish lost…

You will see if you try the same with hooks like the Mustad Big Game and Hoodlums they don’t bend … period. They are strong quality hooks. There are many makes of hooks that are very strong, I use the Mustads because I can get hold of them, they are strong, and they are “fairly” affordable. You can use other hooks, just do the same test on them and make sure they are strong.

The reason you use quality strong hooks is quite simple, with lures it’s normally a SMASH and GRAB case, a predatory fish will hit your lure hard and then suddenly change direction as it tries to get away with the fish, this puts LOTS of pressure on your tackle, especially the hooks and split rings. They need to be able to take the punishment and do what you want them to do.

So what hooks will you use where, as I go through all of the different lures in much more detail than in the previous article we will look at what hooks to use and why, remember we are talking about PREPARING the tackle, not about using it, that comes later.

For the purposes of storing lures for a long time and taking up as little space as possible, the way you have stripped them to this point, they are now actually ready for storage. With hooks on them lures take up a lot more space.

But we are preparing lures now, so let’s start already …

You should now have ALL your lures packed out in front of you, sorted by type, and have long nose pliers, split ring pliers, hooks and split rings ready.

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:04 pm by neilg

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Spoons



With spoons most people use Triangle Hooks, I’m not a fan of them so I remove the triangle hooks and replace then with normal J-Hooks. For certain species of fish it is better to use triangle hooks (so it is said) but I have definitely not had less success since I changed to Single Hooks.

In part 3 we will look at how different species of fish attack, and based on that you can then make more changes to your lures. Or even rig them different.

What I have found is that my REEF hookup rate has come down quite a bit.

Looking at the design of a triangle hook, it is basically a 3 in 1 hook and it hooks anything and everything that comes close to it, INCLUDING THE REEFS and YOU.

I have lost MANY spoons over the years because of that.

I have not lost a single lure since I changed to Single Hooks, maybe I’m just lucky, but I believe it’s because of the fact that I’m using a single J-Hook.

I have also seen many people get hurt with triangle hooks, most of the time when they are trying to get the fish under control to remove the hook. A splashing fish is strong, very strong, and if that triangle gets into your finger or hand that fish will return the favour and make sure that you feel what it feels like to be hooked.

Remember that when fishing with Triangle hooks, don’t go anywhere near the hook until you are sure that you have a very firm grip on your fish and have it under control.

You must make your own choice on whether you are going single J-Hook or putting better quality Triangle Hooks on.

For the purpose of this article, we going J-Hook.

Look at the picture of the silver spoon, notice that it has an oval shaped split ring, well the reason for that lies in the location of the holes on the spoon. Normal round split rings are VERY DIFFICULT to put on without damaging them, the oval ones goes on a lot easier.



I know I forgot to tell you to get oval split rings, but they work best on most spoons. You can use normal split rings, or just keep the standard ones on (if they are strong and of a good quality). If you go the normal round split ring route, take care and don’t damage the split ring.





The way to put on a split ring is after grabbing the ring with your split ring pliers (which pushes the split ring open) and turning it sideways in relation to your spoon, you then slowly but surely work it onto the spoon and through the hole in the lure. Be patient, you might destroy a split ring on two. Once you have the hang of it, do it on all your spoons.

The way to see if you damaged the split ring, if it doesn’t close properly, meaning it doesn’t return to the way it looked when it was new, the ring as pictured middle above basically stays open. If this is the case you must remove it and put another one on. It has been “stretched” too far and cannot return to normal shape.

Some spoons have a solid ring on them, you can choose to either cut it off and replace it with a split ring or to simply add a split ring to it. If it is a strong solid ring (normally the case) there is nothing wrong with leaving it on, you will just have to cut that ring off.

Now that you have replaced or inspected all the split rings and you now happy with the quality of the split rings it’s time to add J-Hooks. I use 3/0 and 4/0 hooks on my “light tackle spoons”. You can go smaller, but it’s a good size. If you have very very small spoons you can go 2/0. Don’t worry, fairly small fish will swallow that hook, it’s not too big, this I promise you.

Put hooks on all your spoons (you only have 3 … correct ? or is it 10 plus)

Another note on all lures, if you are going the J-Hook route (and if it’s possible) add your hooks so that they point up, it helps with getting hooked into reefs.



You can now choose whether you want to put a swivel on the front of your spoon, if you do so make it a smallish power swivel. The power swivels are stronger than you think, in fact most swivels are. I put swivels on the front of all my lures, it helps with line twisting. It is also not a good idea to tie a knot directly to a split ring, for one it can damage your line and if the split ring is damaged, work the line out … spoon gone.

Somewhere between your leader line and your lure there needs to be a swivel, it prevents line twist, you must choose where.

As an exercise to prove my point, cut 2 x 1m pieces of mono line. On the one tie a swivel to the 1 end and on the other nothing.

Now take the one with the swivel on and hold onto the swivel, with the other hand take the other point of the line and start turning it between you fingers, trying to wind the line up. Nothing should happen.

Now take the line without the swivel and do the same … see what happens.

You need a swivel … somewhere.

You can choose not to use a swivel, but then I would strongly suggest using a quick change clip with a swivel on it. Your choice …

The one pictured is just another variation of the quick change clip. Lots of different ones available



Here are some pictures of some of my spoons, some complete some not. Just to show you I practice what I preach.

Some of my small spoons, notice the size of the hook on the first one, 2nd one has a 2/0 hook, but it’s a very small lure, about 3-4cm long.



Double Rings



“Bigger Spoons”, all 1oz and lighter with 4/0 hooks





Okay, it seems we’ve covered rigging the spoons and getting them ready for action, you can now put the spoons away.

Let’s move on.

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:05 pm by neilg

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:55 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Some other “SPOONS”




Do the same as done with your “other spoons” …

A note on the other spoons, if your spoon has an internal wire that makes a ring in the front, you don’t have to add a split ring, the only reason you would add a split ring would be if you would want to add a swivel to it.

See pic below of spoon with internal wire and solid ring on both sides.



Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:05 pm by neilg

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Swimming Lures

Again same as with the spoons, I’m not going to explain it again, you do it exactly the same as with the spoons.


Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 06:06 pm by neilg

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Now there is the other swimming ones, the lipped swimming lures.



On them I would suggest leaving triangle hooks, just make sure that they are quality hooks. Because of the success of the other lures that I have I have not used these lures very much.

You can try them with J-Hooks, I can’t see why it won’t work but most people leave them with triangles on.

The biggest problem with the lipped lures is their weight, they are very very light and therefore very difficult to cast. To get past this problem we install a weighted triangle hook on them.



A note on these “heavy triangles”, I have found that the best place to install them is in the front (as pictured). If you install them at the back they tend to affect the swimming action of the lure. In the front it doesn’t affect the swimming action, in fact on some of my lures it actually makes the swimming action better, giving it more aggressive side to side action in the tail section.

With lipped lures, it’s also important to make sure that they swim “true”. Care should be taken with lipped lures as damage to the lip can and will affect the swimming action. Even a fish hitting it hard can affect the swimming action. The lure should swim straight when pulled through the water, if it pulls to one side if means the lip is either damaged or not set correctly.

You can change this action and “fix” it by “bending” the lip, up or down or left of right, but you do so entirely at your own risk. If you have to alter the swimming action be very careful not to break the lip and make small changes and test. Patience will be required (and a swimming pool will have it’s advantages).

Last edited on Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:59 pm by neilg

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:56 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Bucktail Jigs


Short and sweet, them you buy ready to fish, and no changes should / could be made to them. You do however get some without bucktail on them, if you want to add some you can buy it from most fishing shops. Simply tie on with thin braid or thread (that you buy to fix your buttons on your shirt), once tied on some glue over the thread will keep everything in place.

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:57 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Plastic Surface Plugs




You mainly get two types of plastic surface plugs, the one that has the an internal wire moulded into it and then another one which has a hole that runs through it, from the front to the back.

The one with the internal wire should be rigged as previously discussed. On the back you have to add a split ring so that you can add either a single J-Hook or a Triangle Hook. You can use either, most people go with Triangle Hooks on them, but they are also effective with J-Hooks. The guys that target Kingies with them have gone the J-Hook route and have been very successful. A J-Hook normally gives a clean and SOLID hookup.
The beauty of having a split ring at the back is that if you have a J-Hook on and find that you keep on missing fish you can change to a Triangle Hook or other way around.

Now the one with the whole through it, they are made the same as the wooden plugs, I will discuss rigging them when I get to the wooden plugs as most wooden plugs are made this way.

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:57 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Wooden Surface Plugs



This is a very good plug, and I prefer them above their plastic cousins. I will talk more about why I prefer them later.

Let’s look at rigging them up for now.

Because of their design you HAVE TO RIG them yourself.
You get a few examples that has an internal wire like the Plastic Plugs, but I haven’t seen them all that much.

You can choose to either rig them with carbon coated wire or with a heavy mono line. Both work and both do the same thing. Most people use a heavy mono line, in the 20kg and up range (light tackle).
You then also have to choose to use a long trace or a short trace.
If you go carbon coated steel, you HAVE TO make it as short as possible.
I normally use mono and make it as short as possible. You can however make it long if you choose.
There is no advantage doing it either way, except that on the longer one the swivel is not so close to the lure. That in itself really isn’t a problem as they are normally charged and grabbed by fish and I seriously doubt that the fish takes the time to check if there is a swivel in front of the plug.

Take a piece of mono and push it through the lure, from front to back.
Once through you HAVE TO put a bead on (see picture at the top) before tying on a solid ring or straight to a hook. The bead is there to protect the knot that you have to make. Remember that this plug can move forwards and backwards and can therefore bump against the knot and damage it.
Tie on your choice of hook or solid ring. Remember if you tie a hook on that is the hook that you’ll use, if you tie a solid ring on you can then add a split ring and have the ability to change hooks.
Once that’s done the rear end of the plug is rigged.
Now on the front end you must choose how long you want it to be, as pictured I go fairly short and then tie on a swivel.

That’s it, rigged and ready for action.

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:57 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Surface Poppers


Rig exactly as discussed before, not repeating the information again.

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:57 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Soft Lures

There isn’t too much that can be said about preparing a soft bait. They way they are made and the hooks that they are used with doesn’t allow for preparing them. What I can say however is that I suggest that you do not use a quick change clip or swivel right in front of them. If you do, it must be the smallest you can get your hands on, I sometimes use a very small one, that’s when I’m too lazy to keep on making knots.
With them the idea is to imitate a fish at a fairly show speed and should therefore limit any “attachments” RIGHT in front of them.

With all soft baits I go the very small swivel tied to leader line, and then from the swivel to the soft plastic lure I run +- 500mm to 1m fluorocarbon bite trace. I prefer the 1m version though.

To allow your soft plastic free movement you should use a rapala knot.
http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=1697&forum_id=44.
This is a very very important knot, and the only knot (okay maybe not the only, but a damn good knot and the only one I use) for connecting your Snoot to your lure, be it a spoon, a plug or a “dropshot” hook. This knot allows whatever it is tied onto free movement. Learn it, practice making it, USE IT.
If you are not using a Quick connect swivel then you should be using the Rapala knot – ON ALL LURES, except if there is a swivel on the front of it.
Look at it this way, you need SOMETHING that allows your lure a degree of free movement, be it a swivel, a rapala knot or a quick change snap swivel, if you restrict your lure you are changing it’s built in action, WHICH IS NOT GOOD.

Notice the “free movement” allowed below.

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:58 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Unrigged soft plastics

What is very very important is that you make sure that they are rigged straight. You want your bait to have a “natural” swimming action and to look as natural as possible, therefore they should be rigged as straight as you can.
Also match the size of hook and jighead (the weight) with your soft plastic.
Using a 4cm soft plastic with a 1oz jighead simply doesn’t make sense at all.
My recommendation is to go as light a jighead as you possibly can, this ofcourse depends on the distance you have to cast and the weather and sea conditions.
Hook size should depend on what you’re targeting.
Remember small STRONG hooks can catch both big and small fish, but big hooks can only catch big fish.
It is very important that your hook stands proud, a hook hidden inside your bait cannot hook a fish.

If you find that the fish simply bite the tail section off, so you get bump after bump and then only get half a soft plastic back, it means that it’s fairly small fish. There is a trick to catch these little buggers that are costing you so much money.

Take a short piece of your lightest fluorocarbon and tie a small hook (remember I told you to buy size 12, 10 and even 8) to it, now you tie that other side of your line to your jighead. The length of the completed setup should be a little longer than your soft plastic. Now insert the “assist hook” as close to the tail as possible.
Understand that this could affect the action of your soft plastic, so should not be standard practice, but it can help you to identify the species and size of the fish or should I say guilty party.

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:58 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Rigged Soft Plastics


They come completely rigged, which makes it easy.
If small fish are around and take the tails off follow the previously mentioned advice.
Connect them using the Rapala knot.
Another thing on the tails that get bitten off, IT WILL HAPPEN on a REGULAR basis. Sometimes it becomes very frustrating, taking into consideration the cost of the damn soft plastics.

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:58 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Worms and the others



Exactly the same as with the unrigged plastics.

------

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 Posted: Mon Sep 22nd, 2008 05:58 pm $report_button
   
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neilg
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Okay it’s the end of part 2.

In this article we looked at setting everything up and preparing it.

In the next article we will have a look at the rest, which will include how to use it, where to use it, when to use it and what you will be targeting.

I have to do it this way, otherwise it will be to long an article and take too long to complete. I’m going into a fair amount of detail, and the idea is to help anybody and everybody so that they know exactly what to do, how to do it and why they are doing it.

To go further on Part 3 (which I haven’t started with yet), we will even be looking (in a fair amount of detail) at a few fish and their habits, it’s important that you know what you are targeting. Put it this way, you should know more about a species of fish than it knows about itself. ALMOST like the REVENUE SERVICES, they know more about your money than you do.

End of part 2

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